After a federal appeals court ruled that the state could temporarily enforce new requirements for abortion facilities, Texas abortion providers are looking to the U.S. Supreme Court.
On Monday, attorneys for the abortion providers challenging the state’s House Bill 2 filed an emergency application asking the Supreme Court to reinstate a U.S. district court ruling that had blocked key provisions of the law from going into effect.
“There can be no question that just a handful of clinics left to offer safe, legal abortion care to all women across the vast state of Texas is a dire emergency in need of an immediate response,” said Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights.
In their application, the abortion providers argued that the enforcement of HB 2 had already had “a devastating impact on the availability of abortion services,” leaving only eight abortion facilities in the state and none south of San Antonio or west of Fort Worth.
“If the stay entered by the Fifth Circuit is not vacated, the clinics forced to remain closed during the appeals process will likely never reopen,” the request reads. “Further, women’s ability to exercise their constitutional right to obtain an abortion will be lost, and their lives will be permanently and profoundly altered.”
The application to vacate the stay is here. We know that the judge who wrote the opinion allowing HB2 to be enforced basically begged SCOTUS to take the case, so in effect both sides are asking for the same thing. We bridge players have a saying – “If both sides want to lead the same suit, one side is crazy”. I suppose there’s probably not much to lose, at least in Texas, by taking one more shot at this. That doesn’t stop me from having a very bad feeling about this. The Current and Newsdesk have more.
UPDATE: The Fifth Circuit won’t reconsider their earlier decision, so that’s that.